Jeff Hughes – Spine Surgery

Physician – Dr. Jeffrey Carlson
Hi, my name is Jefferson (Jeff) Hughes and the following is my testimonial regarding the lower-back surgery performed by Dr. Carlson of the Orthopedic & Spine Center (OSC) of Newport News, Virginia, on 11 June 2012.

I come from a Military family (father retired from the (USAF), served in the USAF and retired with Disability (DAV) after having severe trauma to both knees; and have been a Peninsula resident for the past 40 years.

Currently, I’m a Civil Service employee with the Department of Navy, with 34+ years, and in the final process of “Retirement”, slated for this December of 2012.
From my military upbringing and service to the Government, I’m from the “Old-School, suck it up and keep on going, no-pain-no gain” philosophy. That worked pretty good except as I got older and my body started to tell me more, that aches and pains are not “normal”.

Having been diagnosed and treated for Congestive Heart Failure, High Blood Pressure, High Cholesterol, weight gain (50 pounds over AMA level), during the past year, Depression, Upset/Sour Stomach and “NO” energy, due to the pain that I have experienced over the past 5 years. With the pain (back, arms and legs), I woke up in the mornings- tired, went to work-tired, sat around and tried to perform my duties, and then came home, cooked, fed the dog, took care of my ailing wife, and then go to bed and start the same thing, over and over.

Everything came to a head around the 8th of May 2012, while I was at work; I couldn’t get out of my office chair. I called my Family Physician to see if I could see him that day to find out what was going on. My Supervisor helped get me on my feet , and then to my vehicle, (seemed to be able to drive OK), and upon arrival to my doctor’s office, I was in so much pain that I lost most of the feeling in my right leg. Doctor took a look at me, thinking it could be a reaction to my Cholesterol drug, took me off it and gave me a prescription for pain, a steroid-drug (anti-inflammatory), and referred me to see Doctor Snyder from OSC to check out my lower back.

Upon seeing Doctor Snyder and having (state-of-the-art, in-house) x-rays and MRIs (in the course of 1 week), it was determined that I had a herniated Lumbar Disc that was putting pressure on the Sciatic nerve to my right leg.

Course of action was to “rest”, continue the pain management and to see Doctor Sureja from the OSC-family (OSC is a very close knit line of professional personnel with one goal – to help the patient) to have a lower-spinal Epidural injection to see if that would relieve the pressure on the nerve.

I went back to Dr. Snyder in three weeks after injection and I was still having pain and tingling in my right leg. I was referred to Dr. Carlson to see what other options I had. I had only two (2), try the injection again or surgery. Dr. Carlson explained the procedure and risks and then left it up to me. I told him, I was tired of hurting all the time; that the injection in my opinion, didn’t work, so I gave him the go-ahead for surgery. Doctor Carlson was very informative, as well as his staff, that made the next step (surgery) easy and not stressful. I think my family and friends were more under stress because the nature of my up-coming surgery.

OSC staff was very helpful on scheduling pre-OP appointments, necessary post-OP equipment (walker, Bone Stimulator, in-house nurse visits and PT). On arrival at the hospital on the day of surgery, I met with Dr. Carlson and his team, talked a little bit about what was going to happen and Doctor Carlson told me everything will be fine. Doctor Carlson removed the lamina around my spine, that was putting pressure on the Sciatic nerve leading to my right leg, repaired the herniated disc and then inserted the spinal “fusion” fixation of pins and screws.

Woke up in the recovery room and Doctor Carlson said everything went fine. He asked how I felt, to wiggle my toes and if I had any pain. I felt GREAT, no pain, a little swelling the lower back, but overall GREAT. Afterwards, was moved to my room and the next morning, PT had me up and walking. No stopping since, could sit up, put on my back brace, got out of bed, and with the aid of my walker (only needed it for 3 days) off I went- walking with NO pain. Was discharged from the hospital two (2) days after surgery, went home, had Home-care (nurse daily visits and PT), kept myself mobile and was walking over 1-mile five (5) days after surgery.

Had follow-up with Doctor Carlson ten (10) days after surgery, where the staples were removed, x-rays taken (to make sure everything was in proper position) and where he answered all my questions. I informed Doctor Carlson that after years of no energy, tired all of the time, pain and general depression, I felt GREAT, almost like a 20 year old. Blood-pressure readings are back to normal, I no longer have stomach problems, can actually go up and down stairs with no shortness of breath and the biggest of all – NO PAIN.

Knowing that I have months of wearing of the Back Brace and Bone-Stimulator, if this is all the minor aches and pains I get, bring it on- I’m ready to take back my life and get on with it.

From the bottom of my “Heart” – THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, Doctor Carlson and all of the OSC Team. Retirement is looking GOOD now.

Jefferson H. Hughes

Janice Hoffman – Hip Replacements

Physician: Dr. Haynes

My name is Janice Hoffman, and I am an adjunct English teacher at one of the local colleges. Although I’ve never been athletic, I do lead an active lifestyle, especially since our grandson and his two Chocolate Labs live with my husband and me. Four years ago, I was horrified to learn that I would need a total hip replacement, so much so that I put it off for a year and a half. I had seen doctors here in Williamsburg and had even gone to Richmond for a second opinion, for I was sure they were all wrong; of course, they weren’t. In the meantime, a friend saw an article about an information workshop Dr. Boyd Haynes would be having in Newport News, and knowing how uneasy I was about the whole ordeal, she encourage me to attend. As I sat there listening to the details, I was still concerned about the procedure; however, I was immediately struck by how personal, likeable and funny Dr. Haynes was. I checked his outstanding record as an orthopedic surgeon and knew that when the time came, he would be my choice for this dreaded event, so I scheduled my consultation appointment, confirmed all I needed to know, and then put the surgery off once again.

By spring 2010, however, the physical therapy and meds could no longer prevent the embarrassing limp and crippling pain, so I knew it was time. I remember clearly that right before Dr. Haynes left the pre-op room, he touched me on the shoulder and called me by name. I already knew of his skill as a physician, so for a woman who was afraid of having this surgery, that one simple gesture gave me great peace. I went to sleep and awoke later with a new jiffy hip. The surgery itself went great , and I had a relatively quick recovery. The only problem was that I had issues with the anesthesia, something I swore would not happen again. Fast forward to this time last year when I discovered I would have to have the other hip replaced. Even though I had such a positive experience, I did not want to do this again, but it was inevitable, so this past summer, three years after my right hip replacement, I was back at Mary Immaculate for my left hip replacement. Once again, Dr. Haynes was there to comfort me in pre-op. He encouraged me to speak to the anesthesiologist about my preference, and that doctor was agreeable, so I knew that aspect of the event would be totally different this time. When Dr. Haynes asked how I was feeling right before the surgery, my response was that I was still a bit apprehensive. His quip was, “Well, here’s the good news: I’m not!” We laughed, and again, his kind demeanor put me at ease, and I was ushered into surgery.

I am one of those people who never dreamed she’d have to have both hips replaced, but since I did, I am so thankful I met Dr. Boyd Haynes. I am also one who says she wishes she had done it sooner. I was amazed with how well I did this second time. With the continuing updates in procedures, equipment, and follow-up care, I healed even faster than before. It’s really quite remarkable. When I go for my allergy shots, the nurse always shows me off to the other patients and tells them about my two new hips and how well I did both times. I would never push anyone into having surgery, for we each must make our own decisions; however, I can and do encourage people to check everything out ahead of time, and I always, always recommend Dr. Haynes for his expertise, kindness and sense of humor. For many of us, the bedside manner is as paramount as the skill. This past weekend, my husband, grandson and I were in Colonial Williamsburg strolling and enjoying the beautiful wreaths and decorations of the season. I turned to my husband and said aloud, “Thank you, Dr. Haynes. I can walk here in my favorite place with no pain and no limp because of you. I can walk.” My husband smiled and responded, “Yes, thank you, Dr. Haynes!” This one surgeon’s skill and kindness have affected an entire family unit and we are all deeply appreciative.

James B. Pierce – Hip Replacement

Physician – Dr. Boyd Haynes

I had a deteriorating hip over a period of 6 to 8 months. Shortly after seeing Dr. Haynes, I had to start using crutches and a wheelchair until he could operate on me using the anterior hip replacement method. The surgery went very well and Dr. Haynes explained what had taken place. He also said that I won the award for “the worst hip of the year”. It is not that way anymore. I used a walker during the first week after surgery, but was walking with no pain in the hip. My muscles were still sore, but that got better very quickly. By the middle of the second week, I would have to try and remember where I had left my cane, as I kept walking off without it and not noticing that it was missing.

To me this was a “miracle surgery”. The new hip never gave me any pain and as my muscles healed, I could do everything that I had been able to do previously with a “normal” hip; even play golf after only 4 weeks.

Dr. Haynes and his staff were kind, caring and knowledgeable. They followed up to make sure everything was going well. Dr. Haynes even added almost 7/8 of an inch to my right leg to level my hips so I wouldn’t be limping anymore. I would recommend Dr. Haynes and his staff to anyone needing a hip replacement.

Harry E. Waters – Spine Surgery

Physician – Dr. Carlson

Last Christmas (2012) I could walk our two Yorkshire Terriers only a few minutes before the neuropathy in both legs caused me to stop. My lower back had been sore for several years. A series of epidurals hadn’t helped. My wife encouraged me to see Dr. Carlson as he had treated her for a neck problem, and the rest is history. A MRI showed the extent of my problem and we determined surgery was necessary.

In February 2013, Dr. Carlson performed a Lumbar Fusion and Lumbar Laminectomy at Mary Immaculate Hospital. I stayed in the hospital for two days and then came home with a visiting nurse and physical therapist. The neuropathy was gone, there was some discomfort for several weeks, but nothing like the discomfort I experienced before the surgery. One of the keys to my recovery was a lot of walking: I wore the legs off a walker going around the neighborhood. I have had two follow-up appointments with Dr. Carlson and all is healing well.

I cannot say enough about the staff at Orthopaedic & Spine Center and Mary Immaculate, they smile and make you feel welcome. Also the physical therapists on the second floor are really good.

The bottom line is that the dogs are enjoying much longer walks and the pain is done. Additionally, my wife says I’m easier to live with.

Doug Blaha, Captain USN (ret) – Hip Replacement

OSC Physician: Dr. Haynes
Doug Blaha
Alaska was the Motivation!

On our 40th anniversary in 2001, we took out entire family, including grandchildren, on a two-week cruise to Alaska, a lifetime dream. During the trip, our adult children said “ Dad, you’re limping” and my usual reply was “yeah, but it doesn’t hurt very much”. Clearly, I walked less and enjoyed it less.

After returning home, I made an appointment to see Dr. Boyd Haynes, who I had met socially a few years earlier, to discuss my limp. He explained that it was caused by arthritis in my right hip and that I would eventually be a candidate for a new hip. He asked if it affected my lifestyle and I replied honestly that it really didn’t. He suggested over-the- counter pain medications would relieve most of the symptoms and until it affected my lifestyle, no further action was necessary. He was right.

Several years later, in 2006, we began planning a two-month trip to Alaska in our motorhome, along with a group of retired military families. Thinking ahead, I did not want to miss out on any side trips or hikes during this adventure. Returning to Dr. Boyd Haynes, we scheduled a hip replacement in January 2007 as it was now “affecting my lifestyle”.

I left my hip pain in the operating room. My recovery was fast and even enjoyable. What a pleasure to walk without pain. Used a cane for less than a week and was driving a month later. By March, we were traveling again and in June, we made the most enjoyable trip to Alaska.

In the seven years since, we have visited every state (except Hawaii) and every Canadian Province in our RV. I’ve hiked the canyons and arches in Utah and walked on the seafloor of the Bay of Fundy and I have not taken any pain medicine for my hip in years. The only time I am reminded of my new hip is when I put my socks on in the morning. I can’t put my right ankle on my left knee to put my socks on.

Now 75 years old, my wife of 52 years and I are very grateful for Dr. Boyd Haynes and the wonderful folks at Orthopaedic & Spine Center that allow us to continue enjoying life and the lifestyle we enjoy.

Dianne Spears – Spine Surgery

OSC Physician: Dr. Carlson
My name is Dianne Spears. I am originally from Hudson Falls, New York, but have lived in the Tidewater area for over 40 years. During those years, the Orthopaedic and Spine Center (OSC) has been a place I could count on to remedy the damage I did to multiple body parts. For example, Dr. Boyd Haynes has repaired for me two rotator cuff and two meniscus tears.

On October 21, 2013, I fainted and fell, hitting my head. The doctors at the Bon Secours Harbour View Emergency Room determined that I fainted due to sinus bradycardia or slow heartbeat rate. This diagnosis was confirmed by a Tilt Table Test (TTT) ordered by Dr. Robert Accettola at the Cardiac Diagnostic and Treatment Center. Dr. Accettola gave me a prescription to balance my blood pressure and heart rate; and, he indicated that it was very important for me to immediately address the increasing pain in my neck and arm apparently caused by the accident.

My first thought was of the OSC. I made an appointment with Dr. Jeffrey R. Carlson on November 1, 2013. During this appointment, it became frighteningly apparent that I was unable to lift my right arm away from my body more than about 25 degrees. The MRI Dr. Carlson ordered at the Open Imaging Center confirmed that joint arthrosis and mild to moderately severe disc narrowing, dessication and bulging was causing compressing on the nerve controlling my right arm from the 5th cervical disc in my neck. My husband and I love ballroom dancing, but I was afraid I would be unable to dance very well again.

However, Dr. Carlson recommended a surgical procedure called Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion (ACDF) that he performs three or four times a week. Although I was overwhelmed by the injury and the procedure, I was reassured by the confidence Dr. Carlson and his staff demonstrated.

Kaye Dame, Dr. Carlson’s Surgical Scheduler described that the ACDF would be performed at the Surgical Pavilion at Mary Immaculate Hospital. She carefully went over pre-surgery instructions and preparations which further reduced my anxiety. She also indicated that Dr. Carlson ordered Personal Touch Home Care Nursing, Physical Therapy and Medical Equipment at my home following the surgery.

On December 4, 2013, Dr. Carlson removed the disc material between my C4, C5, C6 and C7 vertebrae through a small incision in the front of my neck. He replaced the material with bone grafts held in place by a small metal plate with screws to enable the bones to fuse or heal together. To aid the fusion, Dr. Carlson ordered a bone stimulator which was delivered to my home a week after the surgery.

As I write this testimonial, it has been 18 days from the surgery. I must say my overall experience was much easier than I anticipated. That is, Dr. Carlson’s process from beginning to end was superb. My pain was managed amazingly well in the hospital. The hospital staff was very responsive to helping me through the night after surgery, but were less so during the morning shift change.

I was able to stop taking pain medication at home five days after the surgery. I only have a tiny line on my neck at the surgical site that is fading fast. I have full range of motion and I am building strength in my right arm. I am happy to report that my husband and I were able to dance at our Christmas parties this year.

Deborah Seward – Knee Replacement

Physician – Dr. Jeffrey Carlson

I was in pain every day. I was going to see other doctors and they would treat the pain, but it didn’t go away. So, a friend of mine went on the Internet and found Dr. Carlson and pulled up his history. I made an appointment to see him.

When I got the appointment, Dr. Carlson x-rayed my left leg and saw that the bone was on bone in my knee. He let me know that I needed a knee replacement.

On December 31, 2012 I had a total knee replacement. To make a long story short, I feel better than I have ever felt, thanks to Dr. Jeffrey Carlson. He is the best!

Cristi Hayes – Hip Replacement, Pain Management

Physician – Dr. Haynes

My name is Cristi Hayes. I was diagnosed with osteoarthritis of my right hip, back in 2008 at the age of 35. In February 2013 at the age of 39, Dr. Haynes performed a total hip replacement of my right hip. So I’m here to tell you my story.

I have had problems with my hip since 2007. The main problem was when I would sit down for a while and go to get up, my hip felt like it was stuck. It would be so painful until I worked out the kink. After about a year and a half of pain, I finally broke down and went to go see my primary care physician. After explaining to her what had been going on, she decided to order x-rays and refer me to an orthopedic surgeon. I was originally referred to a different orthopedic surgeon. My experience was not good. With this particular surgeon, I waited for almost 2 hours to get called back into a room and the doctor spent about 5 minutes with me. When I asked him how we could fix my problem, the first thing he said was a total hip replacement. Well, that was not an option for me at that time. The doctor didn’t explain anything to me. I left the office almost in tears. As soon as I left, I called a friend of mine and told her what had just happened. She suggested that I call my primary care physician and get another referral for a different orthopedic surgeon, and she suggested that I go and see someone at Orthopaedic & Spine Center.

I made an appointment with Dr. Petrow. I was very nervous when I arrived at my appointment. I was praying this office visit would be a better experience, since I didn’t have a good experience at the last orthopedic surgeon. It could not have been any better. Dr. Petrow sat down and showed me the x-rays, explained to me what osteoarthritis was. He told me I was too young for a hip replacement, and that there were other options to try before a total hip replacement would even be considered. He wanted to prolong it as long as possible.

We decided that it would be a good idea to try a joint injection in my hip to see how that would work. I saw Dr. Sureja for that procedure. The first injection I received lasted about 2 years. I waited another year before I went back and had another injection. That one lasted about a year. I received my 3rd joint injection in October 2012. Unfortunately for me, it did not relieve the pain. I was told I could receive another injection in 3 months. In December, I started to have a hard time sleeping. I would wake up 5-6 times a night in pain. I decided to go see a doctor about trying to get a prescription to take at night until I was able to see Dr. Sureja for another joint injection. I explained my story to him and he decided to get some x-rays of my hip. He looked at the x-rays and told me what he saw in the x-ray, that he didn’t think the injections would be beneficial to me anymore, and needed to go see my orthopedic surgeon.

I chose to see Dr. Boyd Haynes, since Dr. Petrow was no longer practicing with OSC. Dr. Haynes sat down and talked to me and we decided that it was time to get my hip replaced. Dr. Haynes performed the Anterior Hip Replacement. The surgery went really well. I was in the hospital for 24 hours and up walking the same day of the surgery. Everything was set up with the home health nurse, occupational therapist and physical therapist coming to my home before I even left the hospital. I didn’t have to worry about making any phone calls to set anything up.

I was given exercises to do at home by the physical therapist before I left the hospital. I was told to do them several times a day, which I did. I went off the pain medicine after 10 days. I used a walker for 9 days, and then went to a cane. I used a cane for about a week and a half. After my 2 week follow-up visit with Dr. Haynes, I returned to work. I started outpatient physical therapy, and continued that for 3 weeks and then I was discharged. I still did the exercises at home since I was no longer going to outpatient physical therapy.

One thing everyone needs to keep in mind is that everyone handles pain differently and everyone’s body heals at different rates. Don’t think that right after surgery everything will be 100%. We all have to work at getting our muscles back to normal. I was blessed, as I did not have any complications. I couldn’t have done it without Dr. Haynes doing such a great job. Eight weeks after surgery, I noticed more and more improvements. I could sit down and not have to worry about my hip getting stuck and sleep through the night without waking up 5-6 times in pain. At my 10 week visit, I was told I didn’t have to come back for one year. All is have to say is great things about this practice. One thing that I really appreciate is that the doctors were willing to try other options instead of rushing into surgery. I never waited longer than 20 minutes to get called back to see the doctor. From the bottom of my heart, I cannot thank Dr. Haynes enough for doing such a great job. You are amazing.

Craig Warren – Spine Surgery

Physician: Dr. Jeffrey Carlson

I would like to thank Dr. Carlson for saving my husband’s life. An unrelated MRI, that was completed at my husband’s job, showed that my husband had a bone spur pressing against his spinal cord right at the base of his brain. As we looked at the MRI and Dr. Carlson explained the seriousness of the problem, he did so in a way that assured us that everything was going to be just fine.

Since we did not come to the office expecting to hear that my husband needed surgery, I was in shock. After I quickly prayed and tried to hold back my tears, Dr. Carlson educated us regarding the problem and the surgical procedure that was needed and was available to answer any questions we had (and we had quite a few!). He and his staff were extremely patient and compassionate.

Dr. Carlson’s staff (especially Kaye) helped us to quickly schedule surgery and to maneuver through a tricky insurance issue, as my husband had to switch from regular coverage to COBRA. I feel like we received the best medical care possible and could not have asked for a better doctor. I was amazed that when my husband got to his room, Dr. Carlson’s office had a cheerful flower arrangement waiting in the room for him.

My husband’s scar will always be there to remind us of this trial, but I believe that the precision that Dr. Carlson used made even the scarring minimal for such a procedure as this. We are forever thankful to God for Dr. Carlson and his staff and we highly recommend him for anyone who needs an Orthpaedic Surgeon.

Bonnie Sizemore – Spine Surgery

Physician: Dr. Carlson

I developed severe pain in my lower back on July 1, 2012. After going to the ER, they gave a diagnosis of sciatica. The pain was not helped by the Tylenol #3 prescribed. On July 3, 2012, I went to see a chiropractor, Dr. Boon, in Williamsburg, who I have been seeing since 1991. She, upon examining me, did not do a regular treatment, but made the diagnosis of a pinched nerve in my lower lumbar. I kept ice packs on my back and leg and as she suggested, called Dr. Carlson’s office. They did an MRI, which confirmed a pinched nerved in my lower lumbar. Dr. Carlson did surgery at Mary Immaculate Hospital on July 23, 2013. It was an 8 week recovery, but the pain relief was immediate in my leg. The recovery medications made me very drowsy, but managed the pain.

Dr. Carlson is truly the top of orthopedic surgeons. Everything healed as he said it would. It gave me a new chance at daily life, without pain & strong medications. I can go to the YMCA, shop, play with my grandkids and enjoy being active again.